Tuesday, August 2, 2005

(Excellent) Ice Man Cometh

That's right, Hart/Norris trophy winner Chris Pronger is an Oiler. The emoticons are bouncing on the Oilfans website tonight.

The Oilers haven't seen a trade this big in a while, so take it in like a fine wine, good sirs and madames.

For him we traded our potential but never-quite-full-fledged Number 1 defenceman and soon to be UFA Eric Brewer, along with Jeff Woywitka and Doug Lynch. Good deal. Reportedly, Pronger is gonna have a 5 year deal, which makes sense since one of the biggest reasons he wanted to move on is that the Blues weren't offering anything long term. He's good grit, offensive upside, can play the point and well, it's a good deal.

I guess with all this blog/media Brewer trade talk you knew something might happen....

His stats:

2003-04 St. Louis NHL 80 14 40 54 -1 88 203 6.90
2002-03 St. Louis NHL 5 1 3 4 -2 10 11 9.09
2001-02 St. Louis NHL 78 7 40 47 +23 120 204 3.43
2001-02 Team Canada Olympic 6 0 1 1 +2 2 9 0.00
2000-01 St. Louis NHL 51 8 39 47 +21 75 121 6.61
1999-00 St. Louis NHL 79 14 48 62 +52 92 192 7.29
1998-99 St. Louis NHL 67 13 33 46 +3 113 172 7.56
1997-98 St. Louis NHL 81 9 27 36 +47 180 145 6.21

Brewer's stats:

2003-04 Edmonton NHL 77 7 18 25 -6 67 135 5.19
2002-03 Edmonton NHL 80 8 21 29 -11 45 147 5.44
2001-02 Edmonton NHL 81 7 18 25 -5 45 165 4.24
2001-02 Team Canada Olympic 6 2 0 2 0 0 6 33.33
2000-01 Edmonton NHL 77 7 14 21 +15 53 91 7.69
1999-00 NY Islanders NHL 26 0 2 2 -11 20 30 0.00


Pleasure Motors said...

I swear I posted my other comment before this was up, but, yeah, I guess this is what Lowe spent his day on. Anyway, the question remains: what do we do about forwards now? Do we have the werewithal, in Pronger, to convince someone to come? Or are we pretty much done in terms of new players?


Neil Peart said...

Whoa, I guess our boys had more spunk than I origianlly thought, though me immediate reaction is wha??
Couldn't they have just signed Pronger (like I half-heartedly predicted last week), without dumping Brewer.
Is Pronger a restricted free-agent?
I also wander if the Oilers are on the hook for all of Pronger's $7.22 million per season?

So many questions at 1 a.m. EST.

mike w said...

Oh yeah, Five years at $5.5 million. Makes it a steal, really.

Chris! said...

Wow. Have the Oilers /ever/ had a $5.5 million player on their roster?

This is an exciting deal, for sure, but it's also one that's easy to be pessimistic about. For one, I'm still confused as to why, if Pronger wasn't getting the offer he wanted out of St. Louis, that we didn't just sign the guy(like Collin said) like the free agent he allegedly was, rather than handing over the entire future of our defensive core for the honour? There's probably an obvious answer to this, but I don't see it right now.

And ultimately, I have to wonder if we indeed gave far too much away on the blue line; that's something that we won't be able to tell until the year starts, though. I mean, Pronger is a fucking fantastic defenseman, no question--but he can't stop everyone all by himself. And where does this leave us in the future on our blue line? I'll admit I was one of those guys screaming for the Oilers to make a move now instead of for the future, but I nonetheless a little concerned to see such a wholesale handover. Who's left on the charts after Lynch and Woywitka? And wouldn't Brewer and a high pick have been enough?

Again, this is a good acquisition for the Oilers, but it seems to me that the Blues are the winners on this one; they managed to turn an older, expensive guy they likely weren't planning on signing anyway into a solid young core of very promising and inexepensive prospects. It's classic Oilers, but in reverse.

mike w said...

As a free agent Pronger would have been Max salary and we'd be up against the rest of the league in trying to lure him. I wouldn't like our chances there, if this week is any indication of things to come. Obviously St. Louis was looking to trade him, but even if we did try to steal him as a restricted free agent we'd still lose something towards compensation, like four first rounders...

Based on average annual salary:
Up to $660,000 - No compensation
$660,000 to $1 million - One 3rd round draft pick;
$1 to $2 million - One second round pick;
$2 to $3 million - One 1st and one 3rd round pick;
$3 to $4 million - One 1st, one 2nd and one 3rd round pick;
$4 to $5 million - Two 1sts, one 2nd and one 3rd round pick;
Over $5 million - Four 1st round picks

Woywitka and Lynch were good but not great prospects. They didn't play well with the Roadrunners and have yet to show they're NHL ready. D Matt Greene kind of leapfrogged over them in ranking, anyways. You'll notice that we didn't toss in our real deal prospects like Schremp or Dubnyk, which makes me think that we basically just traded up for once. Pronger is only 31 years old and had a great season in 2003.

mike w said...

I can't post about it right now...but Mike Peca for York? With his 4 million salary?



Pleasure Motors said...

Yeah, I kind of have to side with Mike on this one--Woywitka and Lynch are shaping up to be third or fourth defenceman, if that, and while I agree it's something of a hit, it's nothing we can't fill readily down the road, either with other prospects or minor free agent signings. With a chance to get a former Hart Trophy winner, especially one who's still, pretty much, in his prime, I say this deal is even, if not in our favour. Of course, I also believe that, as a general rule, trading two mediocre players for one good one is the thing to do. The fact that we also lost Brewer mitigates things a bit, but I don't honestly think that Woywitka and Lynch are more valuable than, say, a top-round pick defenceman.

I agree, of course, that we don't have much behind Pronger (we have no number two, just a raft of guys who are decent 3-4 d-men, like Smith, Staois and Bergeron), but I still think his quality makes up for it. Now, we just have to sign Jason Allison. Or something.


Iron Mike said...

Sorry, but didn't St. Louis give up four 1st rounders to get him in the first place and maybeScott Stevens? I think they did.
I forget the details.
There's a great story about Mike Keenan slamming Pronger up against a wall and asking him (after he'd been caught underage drinking) what the fuck he was thinking, and whether Pronger knew "what the fuck we gave up for you, you spoiled fucking brat?"

It's interesting to watch the Oilers spin machine jam into reverse pertaining to the dearly departed.
I think the curtain was pulled back on Woywitka after the roadrunners, Lynch probably had more potential. As for Brewer, the line is now "time ran out" as opposed to blue-liner of the future.

Garnet said...

iron mike: st. loo traded Shanahan straight up for him in '95. It was an earlier signing of Shanahan as a restricted free agent that ended up costing Stevens.

Sgt. McTaggert said...

That's right, good call, I knew it was something like that, but couldn't figure out how the Whalers fit in. In a larger sense the Whalers didn't fit anywhere, not even Carolina.
Remember that time Pronger's heart stopped when he was hit by a puck in the chest?

Anywhoo, on the other side of this trade St. Louis now has Brewer and Barret Jackman, which easily equals three defencemen, to replace soon-to-retire Al MacInnes, and the departed Pronger.
They also have Bryce Slavatore and Eric Weinrich, who I once choose in a 1990 playoff pool as my possible John Druce candidate.